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NASA Develops The Least Dense Solid In The World
The aerogel created by Steven Jones, a NASA scientist in the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, was dubbed the least dense solid in the world when it was successfully produced as a solid material that is 99.8% air. Because of it's hazy blue appearance it was described as "frozen smoke."
The substance was developed to be used to collect particles in deep space.
The record-breaking gel made of silicon-dioxide just like glass, but it is prepared from a liquid silicone that is cooked in a pressure cooker to allow it to retain its shape. At 0.00011 pounds per cubic inch (3 milligrams per cubic centimetre) it is 1000 times less dense that glass, but can withstand temperatures of 2600 degrees F.
Posted: 2002-05-09 2:36:18 PM
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